Union Leader Retracts Christie Endorsement: 'Boy, Were We Wrong'

Mar 1, 2016

Chris Christie
Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

With former Republican presidential candidate Chris Christie now backing Donald Trump, New Hampshire's largest newspaper is calling its endorsement of the New Jersey governor a mistake.

"Boy, were we wrong," is the opening line of an editorial penned by New Hampshire Union Leader Publisher Joe McQuaid. 

The paper endorsed Christie on Nov. 28, calling him "the one candidate who has the range and type of experience the nation desperately needs." 

The paper's backing gave Christie a brief boost in the polls, but he ultimately ended up finishing a disappointing sixth in the New Hampshire primary, prompting him to drop out of the race.

On Friday, Christie announced he was endorsing Trump, despite having criticized the billionaire businessman on the campaign trail.  

"I like him, he's a good person, he's just not the right person to be President of the United States and not the person that we'd want representing our country," Christie said of Trump on Feb. 7.

In an editorial Tuesday, McQuaid said "watching Christie kiss the Donald's ring this weekend - and make excuses for the man Christie himself had said was unfit for the presidency - demonstrated how wrong we were. Rather than standing up to the bully, Christie bent his knee. In doing so, he rejected the very principles of his campaign that attracted our support.

McQuaid said Christie had promised the paper he would never endorse Trump, a claim Christie denies.

The paper has been highly critical of Trump, calling him a "crude blowhard with no clear political philosophy and no deeper understanding of the important and serious role of President of the United States than one of the goons he lets rough up protesters in the crowd."

The public spat with Trump led to ABC severing its partnership with the Union Leader for its Feb. 6 GOP debate in New Hampshire.